Cuteness from Columbia!

While it has been some time since we last updated everyone here, we had to come and share our latest letter from Kevin in Columbia! We plan to update our children’s pictures in the sidebar soon, but in the meantime, enjoy this cuteness!

 

Dear Andy and Miranda,

Hello dear sponsors and Dusty (the first time any of our children have greeted our cat by name!)! I hope you are fine!

I tell you that we celebrated Christmas in this CDC with games, songs, rounds for children and a special service. The food we had in this celebration was broasted chicken, French fries and soda. I spent my holidays at home taking outings to the park and playing with my friends and sharing with my family.

Tell me: How have you been? Did my sponsor Andy already get a job? Congratulations on your 10th anniversary! I am really happy for this celebration. Thank you for sharing this celebration with me and for your care and dedication to me!

The Bible verse for you is, Psalm 25:2

Kevin

Kevin drew us a picture.

It is of an airplane that is colored red, white and blue and has an American Flag attached to the tail. It says, “I fly to visit my sponsor and Dusty!”

Oh my! I just cannot contain the cuteness! Have you received any letters recently that just made your heart melt? We would love to hear about them!

Mail call Monday: Highlights from El Salvador, India, and the Philippines!

We received three letters from some of our Compassion International children in February, and we’d love to share highlights with you!

 

Highlights from Tatiana

 

It seems to us that El Salvador may be sending letters every two months as per the new letter writing guidelines, because we’re seeing a bit of a pattern here while also taking in to account time for transit. Tatiana wrote this letter on November 19 of 2012, and it looks like she is replying to a letter we wrote in August. She begins this letter by telling us that she and her family are doing well and she prays the same for us. She thanks us for the letter to which she is replying and says in answer to our question that to celebrate her birthday in July, she went to church to thank God and invited some friends to her home to eat cake. She shares a bit about the Compassion project where she attends, and that her favorite things to do while there are playing and writing letters to us! Tatiana also tells us that some of the benefits she receives through Compassion are medical checkups, birthday celebrations, and letters from us. Does anyone else notice a pattern here? 😉 She closes her letter by asking for prayer that God would take care of her family and signs her name “with love”.
As always, we love receiving letters from this sweet girl, and her love and personality jumps off the page every time!

 

Highlights from Pankaj

 

The next letter we received was from Pankaj in India, and this may be one of the longest letters from him thus far. He greets us and tells us that he and his family and friends are well. He thanks us for our prayers and letters and specifically discusses extra goodies we sent with our Thanksgiving and New Year packages last year. Referring to goals we had for 2012, Pankaj shares his goals with us. He then mentions Andy’s college studies and my work as a voice teacher in reply to another letter and says he is praying for both. Pankaj then says he attends a government school that is about 1Km from his home, and he walks to school at 7:00 and returns home by 12:00. He asks us to pray that he better understands math. Oh, how we can relate! We loved this glimpse into his daily life, and it blesses our hearts that he chose to share it with us. He shares that at the Compassion project he not only learns stories and Bible verses, but he is able to learn English and math and spend time with his friends who are “good company and fun to be with”. He tells us rainy season is in July and August and they grow their own vegetables, because during rainy season there are landslides that prevent vehicles from bringing vegetables to their local market. Lastly, he shares about India’s upcoming Independence Day celebrations. Pankaj closes this letter by expressing his thanks to God that he can go to school and Compassion, for having good friends, and that we love him.

 

Highlights from Miguel

 

The last letter we received is from Miguel in the Philippines written on October 15, 2012. Miguel greets us and says he received four letters from us in Sept and Oct, and he shares about his birthday celebration with his family in August. He answers Andy’s question regarding what he wants to do with his college degree in information technology, and tells us about his current class project. Miguel then tells us a bit about his college’s fall break schedule and asks about ours. He tells us he is praying for our prayer requests and shares prayer requests of his own, and he closes wishing us God’s blessings until his next letter.

 

As always, we loved receiving these precious letters and sharing highlights with you. Letters such as these from our sponsored children are tangible proof of the importance of the child-sponsor relationship. We pray you can see this importance as you read these letter highlights. Have you received any letters from your sponsored children lately? If so, please tell us about them in the comments.

We are linking up with Michelle from Blogging from the Boonies for this mail call Monday post, and we encourage you to read her and others’ letters as well!

Mail Call Monday: Highlights from Asia and Africa!

We are taking a break from our series on “Seven steps to sending your letter”, as we have recently received letters from some of our Compassion International children and wanted to share highlights with you.

Highlights from Kate in the Philippines:

“You are my inspiration and my loved ones.” “I will pray that you will have more enrollees in your singing lessons, so also to Uncle Andy that he shall get more experiences in his computer work.” “Is it only in singing that you teach? Not in instruments? I also want in piano playing.”

Highlights from a lengthy letter from Miguel in the Philippines:

In this letter, Miguel shares about his youngest sister’s 12th birthday celebration. He also tells us that he attends Compassion on Thursday, and he has an annual acquaintance party at school and wants to know if we do too. He comments on pictures we sent him with one of our first letters, “Thank you for the picture that you gave to me, I will always take care of it. This is the first time that I receive a picture from my sponsor.” This comment broke our hearts and yet gave us joy that we were able to bless him with these photos! This comment shows how much our sponsored children cherish the photos we send!

In response to questions we asked, Miguel shares with Andy what computer programming language he uses and asks Andy what programming languages he uses, and he shares some of the lyrics from his favorite song.

Still responding to our questions, Miguel shares his testimony of how he came to know the Lord as his personal savior, and he shares his favorite Bible verse as well. He also thanks us for the birthday gift money we were able to send and shares what he was able to purchase with this gift. Miguel ends this letter with prayer requests and “God bless you” in all capital letters across the page.

Highlights from two letters from Pankaj in India:

In one letter, Pankaj shares that after June they had heavy rains and some in nearby villages lost loved ones, crops, animals, and belongings. Pankaj says the state government is working to help these people, and he assures us that he and his village are alright. He asks for our prayers for those who lost so much from the heavy rains. “Now rice harvest is almost ready in fields, rainy season is over and we continue our school.” He ends this letter with, “Thank you very much for sponsoring me. Lets keep praying for one another.

Yours Pankaj

PS thanks for your prayer and support we will be praying for you!”

In the second letter, Pankaj shares, “After a few weeks I will be writing my half yearly exams. We had summer break in June so I attended Bible school program and enjoyed a lot. In Sep. we had a gospel week arranged by our project teachers. They taugh us new songs, stories and about Jesus. We met two Pastors also who taught us. We had good times. I am happy that God loves me and has a plan for my life. Thank you for sponsoring me. Lots of prayers.”

Highlights from a letter from Toface in Uganda:

Toface begins this letter by sending greetings from herself, her family, and friends. She thanks us for the letters and extra things we sent for her and her siblings, and she shares about the crops of sorghum, sweet potatoes, and Irish potatoes that her family is growing. She shares a bit about the weather and asks for prayers as she is studying to be promoted to Senior 3 in school. She closes with a Scripture and Christmas and New Year greetings.

Have you received letters from your sponsored children lately? If so, feel free to share about them in the comments section! We are linking up with Michelle from Blogging from the Boonies for this Mail Call Monday, and we encourage you to check out the awesome blogs linked there!

Mail Call Monday: To El Salvador and India we go!

We received two letters from our precious Compassion children on Friday. One letter is from Pankaj in India, and the other is from Tatiana in El Salvador! As we read these letters, we love how their sweet personalities shine right through their words of love straight into our hearts!

Pankaj’s Letter:

Dear Uncle and Aunty “Andy and Miranda.”

My family and I are doing good. I want to thank you for your letters. I really enjoy reading your letters and I also love to learn about your family. My friend Ankit is doing good. I love to hear from you and respond to your letters. Since you asked about my brothers, I want to tell you that my elder brother Sarjay is 14 years old and studies in 8th grade. My younger brother Neeraj who is 1 ½ years old is learning to walk. I love to play cricket with my friends and sometimes love to throw the ball. My favourite Bible story is the story of “David and Goliath.” My favourite subject is Hindi. Thank you so much for your love and prayers. Please write to me soon. [Yours Pankaj]

Pankaj has mentioned in multiple letters how much he loves receiving our letters and learning about our family and life. This is proof that our letters do matter and make a huge difference! He is also very good about answering our questions!

Tatiana’s Letter:

This is a letter written in the new format. The letter gives Tatiana several topics to write about. She has chosen ‘A day in my life’.

Dear sponsors Andy and Miranda, I greet you with many kisses. I hope you are doing well. I will tell you about a day in my life. Every day is very special for me but Wednesday is my favorite one. First of all, I get up and take a shower. I change clothes and have breakfast, I brush my teeth and go to school. Then we go to the market and go home and have lunch. I brush my teeth, take a nap and get up. I change clothes and go and play with my friend Fabiola. Then I go home and help my mom to make dinner. I make some juice. We have dinner together and then watch TV. I brush my teeth, pray and go to bed. I thank God because every day is a blessing. I am glad to have a nice family. With much love Tatiana.

Dear sponsors, I thank you for the birthday gift send, $20.00. Thanks for the nice letter. My family is doing very well. We are in good health. I love to play soccer. I help by bringing tortillas to home I play games with my mom. The place from which I get our water is about 10 steps from home. I learn to read the Bible. I love to read books. Yes, I have accepted Christ in my heart. My favorite Bible verse is Joshua 1:9. Yes, I am baptized. I am learning about subtraction and division right now. I want to be a fashion designer. Wishing blessing.

We have not received many letters from Tatiana, and her previous letters were written on the templates for younger children since she just turned 9 in July. So, this letter gives us a better look at her loving and affectionate personality! We feel like her joy just jumps off the paper! She too is great at answering a variety of questions from multiple letters we’ve sent!

Have you received letters from your sponsored children lately? If so, we’d love to hear about them in the comments section!

We’re linking up with Michelle from Blogging from the Boonies for this Mail Call Monday post, so be sure to check out all of the other wonderful blogs linked there!

Friday-turned-Monday, with a flicker of Friday hope and love

Have you ever had “one of those days”? Come on now… Don’t give me that blank stare, and just raise your hand so I’m not all alone… 😉 I’m sure we all have… Well, last Friday was beyond “one of those days” for me. Honestly, Friday was at the top of my list of days I’d like to forget and not repeat, and I promise I do not say that about many days (even if things don’t go the way I plan). I actually wondered who thought it would be funny to switch my Friday with a Monday, and I would still like to have a “discussion” with the culprit, but I digress… 😉

In the midst of my Friday-turned-Monday, I posted the following on Facebook: “You know what would make me smile today, would be getting a letter from any one of our Compassion kiddos.” Well, our precious niece in the Philippines must have known that we’ve missed her frequent letters lately. Not more than an hour after I posted my Facebook status, this precious letter arrived!

“Dear Uncle Andy and Auntie Miranda, (Doesn’t your heart just melt at this?)

Thank you so much for the b-day card and your greetings for me. Is manok delicious?” (We’re assuming that she is referring to a Philippino chicken dish Andy and I prepared and ate here to celebrate her birthday in April, but we’ve never seen it called Manok.)

Still talking about her birthday, she says: “Thanks again that I am a blessing for you and you also a blessing for me. You are my big gift for as my special sponsor for supporting me.” (Precious Kate, we are the ones receiving the gifts that words could never express)

“I’m so sorry for your ears. Don’t you worry I will continue to pray for your immediate healing and the pain you are now suffering. I love you very much.” (I, Miranda, had a severe ear infection in both ears in July and August, and we wrote each of our Compassion children to specificly request prayer.)

“I can feel your hug and deep concern, I am overwhelmed as I pray for the job that the Lord wil give him as His plan.” (In a recent letter, Andy sent Kate strong hugs and thanked her for her continued prayers regarding his work situation.)

To answer specific questions we asked regarding what she was able to purchase with the $20.00 birthday gift we sent, Kate writes:
1. Step-in are like sandal only that the toes are not covered fully.
2. Chocolate powder are used in porage as coloring and sugar and also in cakes. (This sounds similar to our cocoa powder, and my mouth is now watering!)

“I pray for all your good health. Are there any calamities there in your place? Thanks again.

Love, Kate”

Kate also drew us a very detailed and colorful picture with birds, a house, trees, 3 children, a rainbow and a smiling sun. Her drawings are always so creative! We love this little artist who by the way is growing up so fast, as she is now 11! Kate joined our Compassion family back when she was 8 years old.

So, although my Friday turned into a Monday in many ways, a flicker of Friday hope and love arrived just in time! Isn’t that the way God works? He always does things in his perfect time, right when we need it most.

Have you heard from any of your Compassion children lately? We’d love for you to share about it in the comments!

Would you like to receive precious letters from a child like the one we’ve received from our Kate? Mark and Edwin in the Philippines are waiting for their sponsors, and their birthdays are in just a few short weeks . Will you be one to make their birthdays something to truly celebrate? Sweet Precious’s birthday is one day before Valentine’s day. Will you show her she is truly loved?

Pieces of their hearts

We have sponsored and corresponded with many children through Compassion International since 2004, and in that time we have received many beautiful letters and built even more beautiful relationships!
We want to share just a sampling of some of the letters we’ve received over the past 8 years. Some of these excerpts are from letters written by formerly sponsored children, but we still wanted to share these treasures with you. Some are humorous, and others are just sweet!

Ana (from Mexico):
Dear Godparents Andy and Miranda, Hello!  I miss you very much!” (We were unable to visit Ana while she was in Compassion’s program.)
I went swimming to the river.  The river is very deep and beautiful.  I wish you had been here.”
I greet you with much love because I got the best sponsors.” (Our hearts melted with this sweet declaration of love!)
I passed to sixth grade and I got the second place. I was very happy and I wanted to share this happiness with you.” (We were so honored that she wanted to share her happiness with us!)
We read the new Bibles we all received. I like mine because it is nice and it isn’t big.”

Antony (from Ecuador):
It is such happiness to write you and tell you things about me. Well, most of all I am a very hyperactive boy. What I like most is soccer because I want to be a great soccer player, but as my mom says, I also have to study and I do that with much effort and dedication.”
I greet you with the peace of the Lord and I am glad to receive your letter and it is good that you are together much time. I wish that you would never have troubles. I would like to listen to your music because I think that it is going to be beautiful for God.” (We have a music ministry where we travel and lead worship.)

Claude (from Rwanda):
To my beloved parents, I love you so much and I first greet you in the name of Jesus Christ our King. I wish you God’s peace and blessings.”

Eustace (from Kenya):
When I grow I would like to be a doctor. I request you to pray for my education so that my dream may come true.”

Nallely (from Peru):
“I also want to tell you that my school classes have already started and I am in 3rd grade. I am doing kind of well because some topics are new for me but I will study hard in order to become the best student in class. The subject I like the most is Social Studies because I learn about values and virtues. I also like break time.” (Hahaha! What child doesn’t like break time?)

Toface (from Uganda):
“I remain your daughter in Christ.” (Awwwwww!)

Wilmer (from Columbia):
(As part of his introduction letter) “Favorite hobby: internet”

Vladimir (from the Dominican Republic):
“The reason why I write you is to talk to you about my favorite sport, baseball. I like it very much. I go to the stadium and I am a pitcher and I have a trophy already that I won in a game we had with people in Santiago and also, I have a medal I won; I have two prizes already and I am very excited.”
I ask you to care for me all the time.” (Hearts melt yet again!)

As you can see, these children really treasure the relationship they have with us as their sponsors. We have been so blessed by each of these children and their beautiful words of love. What are some of the precious things your sponsored children have shared with you in their letters? How has corresponding with these children blessed your life?